Harsh criticisms meted out by Pope Francis on free market capitalism have sparked backlash from some fiscal conservatives and have led some people to call him “anti-capitalist” or even a Marxist. In anticipation of his apostolic visit to the United States in September, some are bracing for more criticisms from the pope, this time directed specifically at the culture and economy of the United States. Joseph Kaboski, a professor of economics at the University of Notre Dame and president of Credo, an international organization of Catholic economists, said, “As an individual, the pope probably views redistribution programs as a more effective way of tackling poverty than economic growth.” Kaboski said he views the pope “as neither pro- nor anti-capitalist, but instead a measured critic.” Kaboski said he is “confident Pope Francis finds much to commend” in U.S. economic life. At the same time, the pope “would also criticize the vast disparities in income and wealth...point to the poor in the inner cities, and argue that they are not fully participating in society,” Kaboski said.
A ‘Measured’ Critique